Public insurance adjusters serve a vital role in helping to resolve accident claims. Unfortunately, you might not understand the purpose of these professionals or your options when you need their assistance.
What Is A Public Insurance Adjuster?
Public insurance adjusters work on behalf of policyholders to assess and document property damage insurance claims. Their primary responsibility is to ensure that the policyholder receives a fair and accurate settlement from the insurance company. Public adjusters are well-versed in insurance policy language and procedures, which allows them to navigate the process more efficiently and effectively than policyholders can do on their own.
The main difference between a public adjuster and an independent adjuster is that the former works for the policyholder, while the latter works for the insurance company. Independent adjusters are responsible for evaluating and settling claims on behalf of the insurer, which can sometimes result in a conflict of interest if their goal is to minimize payouts. In contrast, public adjusters advocate for the policyholder's best interests and ensure they receive the maximum settlement possible.
When Should You Start Looking To Hire A Public Insurance Adjuster?
Common situations where you may need a public insurance adjuster include large or complex claims and disputes with your insurance company's assessment of damages. If you feel overwhelmed by the process or believe your claim is undervalued, hiring a public adjuster may be wise. As with other important service providers, you should consult multiple public adjusters before settling on an option for your situation. During this evaluation, review the fees that they charge. There can be considerable variation in the billing structure that they may use. For example, some professionals may charge a flat rate for simple cases. However, some public insurance adjusters may choose to charge an hourly rate.
How Does Working With A Public Insurance Adjuster Differ From Dealing With Your Insurance Company's Adjuster?
The company's adjuster is responsible for assessing the damage and determining the appropriate payout on behalf of the insurance company. They aim to protect the insurer's interests, which may lead to a lower settlement offer than the policyholder deserves. When you work with a public adjuster, they will want access to your insurance contract. They will also need to assess the property damage in person. Taking time to prepare any documentation they request ahead of time can be worth the effort because it will allow the adjuster to begin working on your case more quickly.